Smoker's Widow Asks Fla. High Court To Revive $5M Award

By Carolina Bolado (April 7, 2021, 3:36 PM EDT) -- A smoker's widow asked the Florida Supreme Court on Wednesday to reinstate a $5 million punitive damages award against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., arguing that a law limiting punitive damages does not apply because the cause of action predates the 1999 law.

David Sales, who represents widow Mary Sheffield, told the justices in oral argument that the Fifth District Court of Appeal got it wrong when it determined that Sheffield's wrongful death action arose upon her husband's death in 2007 and not at the time he was first injured from smoking.

Sheffield's husband, Valton, who was a member of the decertified...

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